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Google Glass – The privacy debate

The nature of Google Glass, straight out of a 1960’s spy flick, means wearers can take photos and video clips without the subject knowing. Not only that but questions are now beig raised as to whethewr Glas will enable face recognition, and as such will the wearer be able to access an data relating to complete strangers as they pass by!

Glass clearly presents many industries with extended reach opprtunities. But what are the ramifications for people’s privacy rights? And what is Google saying on this sensitive subject?

The debate rages in the US. Members of Congress (8 in total) sent a letter to Google’s CEO Larry Page on Thursday this week (16th May) asking for answers about Glass’, specifically on:

Will Google Glass collect users’ data without their consent?
What steps are being taken to protect non-users’ privacy?
Will Glass offer facial recognition to identify non-users and display information about them?
What restrictions is Google placing on Glass?
Will Google Glass cause Google to change its privacy policy?
Will Glass store data on the device, and will it offer user authentication?

Already many public places have banned Glass such as cimemas, casinos and some bars.

Google have stated:-
“We are thinking very carefully about how we design Glass because new technology always raises new issues,” a Google spokesperson said this week when asked for comment about the letter. “Our Glass Explorer program, which reaches people from all walks of life, will ensure that our users become active participants in shaping the future of this technology.”

Interesting times ahead.

More information available at Googles Glass official site: http://www.google.com/glass/start/

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